Fender Jazz Bass for Recording

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Basslice, Oct 8, 2020.

  1. Basslice

    Basslice Supporting Member

    May 11, 2008
    Western Massachusetts
    Just thinking out loud here. I have a MIA '95 Jazz V that I got for next to nothing when a friend downsized his hobbies when he discovered his two boys are Hockey prospects (apparently it is an expensive sport). The bass needed a lot of work and I had the neck and frets redone. I played it maybe once or twice at practice and really didn't care for it at all. Sat in its case for 8 years. I didn't like the feel or sound too much.

    This summer I built up a decent home recording studio and started laying down tracks. For kicks, I recorded some songs using the Jazz. I was going direct and adding any effects and amps down the chain.

    All I can say is that it sounds really nice recorded. I have heard that it is a common studio bass. I am now thinking that I may want to buy a Fender Jazz 4-string. Not sure if it is a great idea or not and have been looking at MIA Jazzes. Maybe it is just Covid GAS. Anyone find the Jazz useful for recording?
    Rip Van Dan, REV and lowdownthump like this.
  2. LadyLoveStingRay5


    Jul 17, 2004
    To be honest , I find my jazz basses to be good for recording and live play. Same thing with my precision.

    When I stray away from those 2 style basses is when I find it more difficult .
    I always come back to what works for me. That is a 4 string jazz , a jazz V (active/passive ), and 1 pbass.

    4 string and 5 string basses DONT sound the same . 4 strings have more punch and directness to the notes. 5 strings I find are darker and thicker in the notes. They just don’t resonate the same . Each have their place. You will hear the most difference on the E string. So your need and desire for a 4 is valid.

    The Squier Classic Vibe series ( original crafted in China models), Fender Roadworn, and my favorite ....The Geddy Lee are excellent Jazz basses. Certain years of American Standards are good too.
    For recording , it’s always good to have a Precision Bass too. Again one of the Squier Classic Vibes or even a Peavy Fury are great basses. Not a lot of money . They sit in the mix in a different way. It’s the Classic sound that just works in most situations.
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2020
  3. eliascalles


    Sep 12, 2013
    Qlanq likes this.
  4. Basslice

    Basslice Supporting Member

    May 11, 2008
    Western Massachusetts
    So you find the Squires to be adequate? I am always leery about quality.
  5. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member


    but TBH: i've never had an ax that wasn't useful for both recording and live play, i.e., i don't see the distinction. as far as fender axes go (or their clones) = they're all good for recording/live.

    it's all about what floats your boat! i float mine with PJs mostly, but that's just me. i'd gladly use a J if i wasn't currently angry about the body shape. :laugh:
    Kubicki Fan and Esteban Garcia like this.
  6. LadyLoveStingRay5


    Jul 17, 2004
    These particular Squiers ..... yes.
    The Squier Classic Vibe 60’s Precision and jazz bass crafted in China . Also the Classic Vibe 50’s Precision and Matt Freeman Signature model.
    All discontinued but can be found used . Although getting more difficult and prices are increasing due to popularity .
    Yahboy and Iristone like this.
  7. Basslice

    Basslice Supporting Member

    May 11, 2008
    Western Massachusetts
    I have a Yamaha PJ and a Ibanez PJ (my favorite gig bass). Recording wise, my results have varied. The Fender V sounded distinctly better. More even tone across the board.
  8. Esteban Garcia

    Esteban Garcia bassist, arranger, aelurophile Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2018
    Portland, OR
    I like a Jazz for recording, with volumes and tone maxed on the instrument, direct to the interface. I don't play with guitars, so I don't need that focused P thump to break through the wall of fuzz. The J's got a more open tone which suits the kind of music I play. Honestly any decent instrument can record well if you're playing it well. A J can be thumpy if you roll off the bridge pup and play closer to the neck, etc.
    JRA likes this.
  9. nilorius

    nilorius Inactive

    Oct 27, 2016
    Riga - Latvia
    Fender Professional was great.
  10. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Suspended Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    If you've got a J, why not get a P next instead? Having 5 strings compared to 4 doesn't change the sound. Having a split in the sweetspot compared to 2 singles around it, changes the sound.
  11. Basslice

    Basslice Supporting Member

    May 11, 2008
    Western Massachusetts
    Well, to be honest, I don't enjoy playing the 5-string. Too many strings. Messes up my head and my fluidness. With the kind of music I play I don't find the Low B to be needed. So I use it as a thumb-rest. Like I said. It just gets in my way.

    Willing to trade!
    lowdownthump likes this.
  12. oren


    Aug 7, 2007
    Salem, OR
    I have two Jazz basses that both sound great for recording. I have a 1968 Jazz that has stainless rounds (Dunlop Super Brights) on it, and a Sire V7 fretless with TI Jazz Flats. Very different sounds from each other, but both quite useful to cover a range of situations.
    Basslice likes this.
  13. I second the choice of a P if you want to have a broader palette for recording. If you want different shades of that tone footprint, another 4 string J can be a good choice. Your call.

    Setup, choice of strings (not even taking into account how many) and electronics can contribute to make two basses sharing the same name on the headstock radically different, anyway.

    I'd suggest to give a P a go first, anyway, unless you already know them.
  14. Slough Feg Bass

    Slough Feg Bass Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2007
    San Francisco
    I think it depends on the song, what it calls for. thump, round, full, I grab the P.
    more defined, faster line, clarity, I grab the J.

    Of course if the producer has a MM or something and wants me to use that, then I will use it.
    Basslice likes this.
  15. mikeswals

    mikeswals Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    I've recorded a bit with an old Jazz. They sound fantastic in the studio.
    Basslice likes this.
  16. sotua


    Sep 20, 2004
    Somewhere in time
    Yes. I have an old (20+ years) MIJ that is ugly as sin, strung with fender flats. But plug in, get a pick with a nice bevel, and you can pretty much record straight. DAT TONE. It's my #1 choice for recording.

    (when I need zing, I have a bass with MM pickup and steel rounds. For anything else, the JBass it is)
    nerkoids and Basslice like this.
  17. JIO

    JIO Be seeing you. Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 30, 2010
    The Mission SF/CA
    musician/artist/owner - Gildaxe
    Jazz bass -

  18. Mikey F

    Mikey F

    Aug 12, 2014
    Denver, CO
    Larry Graham always sounded kinda good in the studio with a Fender Jazz. Geddy sounds adequate too:)
    Iristone, lowdownthump and Basslice like this.
  19. A wonderful bass for recording. I used a PBass for decades, got a jazz a few years ago and I am very impressed with how well it works in the studio. For me personally, I think the jbass offers more options in a recording environment.
    Jon McBass and Basslice like this.
  20. wraub


    Apr 9, 2004
    ennui, az
    I like my Jazz for recording much more than I like it in a live setting.
    Basslice likes this.
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